6 Must-Visit Resorts If You're a Beginner Skier

Have the adventure of a lifetime with these top picks of the resorts for beginner skiers each with a vast ski school and terrain for every learner.

Adult Ski Lesson at Whistler Blackcomb

Must Visit Ski Resorts for Beginners

Congratulations on your decision to embark on life’s most euphoric winter activity!

Luckily, learning to ski is a simple process that anyone can do, regardless of age or athleticism. While nearly every ski area on the globe offers a ski school and a lesson of some sort, there’s no question that some resorts are more inviting and nurturing for anyone launching into skiing or snowboarding for the first time.

Here are some of our top picks of the best ski resorts for beginners and families, each equipped with a vast ski school for every type of learner.



Family-friendly is the name of the game at one of the best beginner resorts in Colorado. Besides the cornucopia of gentle, wide-open trails and learning areas, Keystone also offers free lift tickets for children 12 years and younger with a two-night lodging reservation. This is just one of the reasons it’s up there with the best resorts for kids to learn to ski. When the little ones aren’t learning (even when you are), there is a massive snow fort to explore at the summit and plenty of other kid-oriented activities.

Keystone is also home to some fantastic and delicious family-friendly restaurants, night skiing on select dates, and dinner sleigh rides are another fun option.

Beaver Creek

Occupying its own quiet corner of winter paradise, Beaver Creek is a place to come and stay a while. It has a self-contained village where you could spend your entire trip while also learning to ski from some of America’s top instructors. The village is home to a variety of award-winning restaurants, lively bars, an ice rink, and a performing arts center that hosts internationally lauded musicians, theater performances, and comedians all winter.

McCoy Park is the newest dedicated family-friendly terrain at Beaver Creek, offering two new chairlifts and 17 new trails just for beginners. There are other beginner areas situated throughout the resort, including the quiet, high-elevation green trails under the Red Buffalo Express Chairlift, with stunning views of the Vail Valley and surrounding peaks. Another huge bonus is that Beaver Creek’s beginner terrain, Haymeadow Park, is serviced by its very own gondola, Haymeadow Express. Lastly, every day at 3 p.m., a number of bakers converge on the base area slopes with silver platters of steaming, fresh-out-of-the-oven chocolate chip cookies. Warm cookies are just an added touch at another one of the best resorts to learn to ski.  


Park City Mountain Resort

Besides being home to America’s largest ski resort, Park City is also a charming and historic mining town with countless shops, bars, restaurants, and an authentic, rustic-chic glimpse of the Old West. The ski school options are impressive here, and nearly one-fifth of the resort’s sprawling terrain is well-suited to beginners. Many of the mildest trails stem directly out of the Mountain Village base area off the First Time chairlift. Even if it’s not your first time, this is an optimal area to rekindle your groove.

Once you’re comfortable making turns and feel you have some stamina, Park City has a built-in bonus challenge for beginners. The longest run at the resort—Home Run, measuring 3.5 miles—is a wide, easy green trail and the ultimate, rewarding way to work from top to bottom once you’re ready.



The largest resort in California, Heavenly has dedicated 2 percent of its terrain to beginners. You can even tell all of your friends that you skied in two states on the same day, as the resort boasts learning areas in both its California and Nevada base areas. Just know that skiing from one state into another requires heading down intermediate runs. On the California side, the better beginner terrain is on Maggies Run. On the Nevada side, beginners get their very own bowl to explore if there is enough snow coverage. Boulder Bowl, situated conveniently next to Boulder Lodge, is a sprawling field of low-angle learning terrain.

Adventurous beginners also have the option of taking the Aerial Tramway and Powderbowl Express chair to the top of the resort, where green trails like Maggie’s allow for breathtaking views of Lake Tahoe.


This Tahoe resort is popular with families of all skier levels because of its one-stop-shop allure. Once you arrive at Northstar, you have everything you need within easy walking distance. The self-contained village features an ice rink, fire pits (free s’mores!), a broad selection of shops, bars and restaurants, and even a movie theater.

Plus, get this: There are about 100 total runs at the resort, the majority of which fall into the beginner and intermediate categories. Northstar’s milder terrain is also naturally separated from its steeper terrain, with many of its easiest trails (marked green) conveniently accessed off of the Big Springs Express Gondola. 


Whistler Blackcomb

As the largest ski resort in all of North America, Whistler Blackcomb’s sprawling terrain includes many gentle slopes for skiers and riders in their early stages of comfortable gliding and turning. If you are venturing onto the hill for the very first time, the extensive magic carpet zones and the Olympic Learning area are perfect. Whistler Blackcomb also has Emerald Chair, a family learning zone, and Ego Bowl, which is a green run to the lift. Naturally, at a place as big as this, beginners are certainly not restricted to just one quiet base area. After a ride on the Whistler Village Gondola, Olympic Station is home to a huge Children’s Learning Area and an opportunity for families to explore the mild Green Acres area located still higher up the mountain.

The Beginning of a Long, Fun, Snow-Filled Journey

All the spots listed here are the best ski resorts for beginners, and they each have unique and exciting features to offer anyone learning to ski. As you improve your skills and get more comfortable in the snow, remember that your beginner days are the start of a long journey packed with winters full of fun. 

So, find the mountain that works best for you and give it a try. You may find that winter is a lot more exciting when you’re spending it on the slopes.